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WE HAVE FULLY FULLFILED OUR TASK: NAIRI AMIRYANSergeant Nairi Amiryan became known and dear to our society during the hottest days of the war, with one of the videos shot by Zinuzh on the front lines. It was the second day of the war. The incessant explosions of shells, strike drones, attempts to infiltrate the enemy special forces, which pushed back our officers and soldiers with great force … One of them was Nairi, who literally in a few shots condensed the image of a hero, dear and beloved to all of us. His absorbed work in the footage of the fighting, the helmet slightly crooked on his head, under which the face and eyes expressing the artillery fire were shining, the simple smile. The hands shivering from the bullets, constantly shouting the voice broken from making corrections… ?  “Nairi, What would you like to tell your parents?” Journalist Nerses Ivanyan tries to interview the soldier during the fighting. The latter is going to answer, but at the same moment he receives an order and quickly runs to his cannon to determine the direction of the fire. “208, yes!” He says in a broken voice. At the moment of the next relative pause, he is already standing in front of the camera with his direct and bright smile”, he answers the journalist’s question. “I want to tell my parents not to worry. I will definitely come back.”

This much. This is a very heartfelt and comprehensive testimony about this crucial period of the war.

The commander of the artillery unit, Sergeant Nairi Amiryan, fulfilled his promise to his parents: he fulfilled his task with honor in the hottest and most dangerous areas of hostilities and now continues his military service in one of the artillery units of the Armed Forces.

WE HAVE FULLY FULLFILED OUR TASK: NAIRI AMIRYAN“To be honest, I was asleep when the war started,” said the soldier. “It was time for us to sleep, and our crew was at the cannons.” Suddenly we heard the voice of senior battery officer Mnatsakan Avetisyan. “Get up: Get dressed and on the spot!” When I came out of the basement, we heard strange noises that we had never heard before. In the future, those sounds would become a part of everyday life, we would know them well – the explosion of bullets and the unpleasant roar of “Kamikadze”. Our firing position was one mountain away. I came down from the mountain to my cannon and they started firing. We were instructed to load the cannon and fire as soon as possible. Minutes later, Henrik Khachatryan, the driver of my crew, and I started loading the cannon one after the other with lightning speed and firing. My boys, sniper Davit Barseghyan, Hrant Sahakyan and Henrik Khachatryan were shooting. I felt that they were no longer physically fit, but they kept bringing it.… For a moment, they brought it not with their hands, but with their “brain”, with voluntary efforts. “When I remember how much we fired in such a short period of time, I realize that we would not be able to develop that speed physically now,” smiles the soldier.

The main task of the artillery is to protect our rearguards. We did the first few shots quickly, not realizing the situation, rather under the influence of adrenaline, and after a few shots we already understood and adjusted. We realized that with each shell we save the lives of many, many soldiers, we defend a part of our homeland, so we did the impossible.

I’m proud of my staff guys. Let me tell you a story about our driver, Henrik. There were many days during the war to save our lives. He is a wonderful driver. One day we had to move 20-25 people from one place to another to complete the task, and on the way the car braking system suddenly broke down. Our Henrik was able to cross the long and dangerous road through the mountains and valleys without braking and took us to a safe place. Many now have no idea what it means to overcome obstacles. I can only say that it was a real heroism. We owe him our lives.

WE HAVE FULLY FULLFILED OUR TASK: NAIRI AMIRYAN… They fired a lot, the “Kamikazes” were constantly spinning above our heads with their unpleasant voices. From the second half of the first day, we already knew from the volume of the sound how far it was, when it was approaching, when it was going to explode. The sound of bullets had already become commonplace. When we heard the name of our crew, we involuntarily jumped up and jumped to do the task. We felt how much depended on our efficiency.

It was the third day of the war. It was already possible to relax a bit. I lay in hiding to sleep for a while and suddenly felt that I could clearly hear Mnatsakan Avetisyan’s voice in my ears: “On your mark.” Involuntarily jumped up to carry out the order. I sat down and listened. I quickly realized that it just seemed to me, but all the same, I went out of hiding to check myself. Silence. By then, that sound had become so common that it kept ringing in my ears. One day, when I was lying down trying to sleep and hearing Avetisyan’s voice, I was forced to sleep under that sound, there was no way, I had to rest.

We do not see the target from the point of fire. We aim and shoot with the coordinates reported from the observation point. When the commander of our battery was contacted, he told us the good news that we had hit the enemy’s equipment, and he told us how we were getting excited. Our zeal quadrupled.

One day, in the direction of the enemy, who had gathered near the village of Taghavard, we were performing a combat task with direct fire, according to my calculations. We were with Avetisyan Mnatsakan and our head of communication, Arthur Sargsyan. We were guided from both sides. On the one hand, the head of our artillery was giving coordinates, on the other hand, the father of one of our soldiers, who was a resident of Taghavard village and was involved in the defensive battles of the village at that time. We were in the field a few kilometers away. The next day, another of our calculations, led by Avetisyan, continued in the same place. Due to accurate shooting, we managed to drive the enemy out of a significant part of the village in those two days. Before the end of the war, that part of the village was impregnable …

The voices of all the boys on the crew were cut off on the battlefield. The command staff reported and verified the data. We were constantly checking the data. Before each fire, the superior gave us a number, and we had to repeat that number to confirm that we had heard correctly. We were repeating the numbers shouting from some distance. Imagine that on the first day we fired and fired about a hundred shells. We shouted so loudly that we all lost our voices.

WE HAVE FULLY FULLFILED OUR TASK: NAIRI AMIRYAN… During the war you are connected with your staff by fate. You cross the line between life and death. You become a family with battery power. “War seems to equate crew members.” “During the war, the nature of the officer-soldier relationship is very unique,” Nairi notes. “It can be said that the environment becomes friendly and familiar.” The head of our division, Major Karo Haroyan, the senior officer of the battery, Lieutenant Mnatsakan Avetisyan were like relatives to us and created that good atmosphere in our unit. We all knew exactly what we were fighting for, that goal united us all. It united not only us, the military, but the whole nation.

Mnatsakan Avetisyan often gathered and encouraged us, he said. “Guys, everything will be fine.” And it was impossible not to believe him. To me, he is the perfect commander. If there is a danger of war again, I would like to fight next to him again under his command.

We had painful losses. The most tragic was the death of Albert Hovhannisyan, the commander of one of our artillery… He is the soldier of the famous photo. Albert was a very modest, intelligent boy. At the same time, he knew how to behave properly at the moment, he was always true to his principles. Unfortunately, I did not have much contact with him, but I managed to see in him everything I told him and love his kind. There are very few such people…

About 50 meters from us, Albert was having trouble when the incident happened. We immediately ran in that direction. We found him already dead, I did not feel anything for ten minutes, I did not understand. I separated, I thought about life and death, about what we did… And then I felt that they, our dead friends, although not physically with us, are with us in spirit. I realized how important our work is. If we do not, who will? Then they, our dead friends, gave us strength…

Avetisyan Mnatsakan gathered us all one day, he said. “Always remember the name of one of your dead friends while pulling the cannon. Give him the blow. ” Every time after Albert’s accident, I gave his name every time I pulled the rope. “For Albert”, I said and mentally solve his revenge…

I have previously had the opportunity to write about Nairi’s uncle Vazgen Amiryan as one of the best artillerymen in our army. During the war, Vazgen also fought in different directions with his “Grad”. In those days they could only communicate with each other for a few seconds, exchange a few words, make sure they were both alive…

Nairi remembers well how, shortly after leaving the service after the war, he took a short vacation to his native Ashtarak, entered his house, hugged his excited mother. He really is at home after all this and it is not a dream…

“Don’t you think you have already fought your part?” I asked the soldier. He answers without thinking long and hard.

“There is no notion of war in your department. If you live in your own country, then you must be ready to defend it at all times. If necessary, we will fight again, Albert, thinking of boys like him, thinking of our lost territories, which we must try to regain. We must strengthen not only on the battlefield by fighting, but in any field with which we will connect our future lives.

Nairi is a programmer. During his military service he always tried to be useful to the army with his knowledge. Now he shares his knowledge on the battlefield with his colleagues.

“Although we lost a lot of the war, there is no disappointment,” said Nairi. “We have fulfilled our task to the fullest.” And if necessary, we will fight on the battlefield with our batteries, we will defend the borders of our country.



Photo by NERSES I.

Category: #10 (1381) 17.03.2021 - 23.03.2021, National army, Spotlight